Each year, an estimated 6,000 youth in San Francisco find themselves without a safe place to call home—often through no fault of their own. The kids who walk through Larkin Street Youth Services’ doors are diverse racially, ethnically, and socioeconomically, but they share common histories of abuse and neglect, disrupted schooling, and the absence of even the most basic life skills. They have rarely experienced “family” in the traditional sense, and they have few—if any—positive influences in their lives.
They experience the highest poverty rates of any age group in San Francisco. Their educational deficits are compounded by the absence of emotional and financial support from family, as well as mental health and substance abuse challenges that are so common among youth on the streets. One in four youth reports histories of physical, emotional or sexual abuse; one in three reports histories of suicidal ideation or attempts; and one in two reports that their parents are unable or unwilling to care for them.
Larkin Street Videos & Youth Stories: See our youth and programs in action